Friday, January 31, 2014

Here We Go

 I know I said I wasn't posting again until next week, but Surf City just posted the # of runners and I got all excited.
 It's almost time!  I'm so excited for Brian!!
21,000 runners, a sell out in every distance, from all 50 states, and from 33 countries!!

On Sunday, Brian will be one of those runners down there!

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

This Weekend- Athlete Tracking Info

(No new achilles news. It is achy, sore, and hurts if I try to push off from my toes. Hurts, as in I can't do it.  I'm resting and icing, trigger pointing and elevating. That is all.)

As mentioned before, we are heading down to Southern CA this weekend for the Surf City Marathon.  We love this run, it's got such a cool, beachy/surfer/beach boys vibe!  This is the race that starts with you running through a street lined with half dressed surfers holding their surfboards.  It's mostly run along the beach on the Pacific Coast Highway and a beach path. The course is lined with lots of surfer bands playing music.  Plus, the medal is a different surf board design each year!

 I'm super excited to be cheering Brian on as he attacks this one.  He has his pre race dinner planned out, race breakfast, and post race dinner, all at places that are fun for the rest of the family, too! While the weather has finally decided to be winter just in time for this weekend, I'm sure it won't keep us off the beach, rain or shine. We need rain, but are hoping for shine Sunday morning!  Emma borrowed her auntie's wet suit and is ready to hit the waves.

While we know most normal people will be watching the Superbowl and the hype leading up to it, should anyone be interested in keeping an eye on Brian and tracking him, you can do so here. 
While I can't speak for him, I know he's after a PR, and would love to keep it close to 4:30, so if you keep one eye on the computer, you can cheer him on! I believe he starts at 6:30, so should be done around 11, depending on actual start time/ which wave he's in, etc. It is a sold out race, so start could take a while.

Have a great weekend and enjoy watching the game! I won't post again till we get back next week. And, if you are thinking of robbing us because you know we aren't home, don't. First, we don't have anything that you would want, and second, we will be having a big, bad, mean house sitter who's taking care of Kona for us. Kona's our big, bad, mean attack dog. Grrr.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014


 7 weeks into training.
I said in the last post all was well, and told you the plan....for how it would go if the body held up.
I lost my right achilles coming down Dusty this morning. 4.5 miles into the run, running downhill, I started feeling pretty bad pain, tried altering my stride, and then a pop where the achilles meets the calf muscle. I could no longer run/walk/push off from my right foot at all. 
I managed to limp/hop for a mile, took 31 minutes. Some mountain bikers stopped to help me get both compression sleeves onto my right leg, and said they'd send a ranger out. Since I was on Diablo/state park property, a state park ranger showed up after about an hour of limping out. I only had about .7 to go to make it to the car, but was happy to see him. He said he would have been quicker but he was taking a mt. lion sighting report.
The bad part about limping off a mountain for an hour...too much time to think.  Training is all about choices...what if I hadn't run today? What if I hadnt' added on a mile by turning up Dusty? Would it have held out? What if I had worn different shoes?
And of course...what does this mean for the next month? Is Way Too Cool even an option now??

 It popped back on that corner. This was the moment I realized it was really, really not good , and I had 3 miles to cover to get back to the car.

 There is now a permanent record of me getting hauled off the mountain.
Not much else to say, really. I'll be off it completely for at least 2 weeks. Time to shift focus to nutrition and core work and let it heal up. Nothing else to do.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Week 7-Training Schedule Ramblings

I can't believe how fast the weeks go by when you have a training schedule in place!
I've settled in nicely to the 2 hard weeks/1 lower mileage week flow of things. My body seems to generally agree to it.  Today begins week 7, and with it begins 4 weeks in a row of the kids being home on Mondays, which is normally a 10 mile day.
Starting with this week, my long runs go up to 15, so rather than have a 10, and a 15 in the same week (I've done a 10 and a 13 in the same week for the first 4 "hard weeks", and one of the easy for the past 5 out of 6 weeks) I had planned on moving long run day to Monday, followed by a 6 on Tuesdays, Wed off, Thursday would be an 8, and Friday is whatever the Beast and I decide to do, but usually is between 5-8.  I just realized as I typed that, I have been running a half marathon a week for the past 5 weeks, which should sound like a lot but hasn't felt like it and in the trail running world is no big deal. For me, it is kind of a big deal, though.  Moving on, my Monday plan will not work with the kids being home. Which means I just cut out the Wednesday rest day. So the running week starts on Tues with the long run, 6 Wednesday, 8 Thursday, Beast Friday, and then 3 days in a row off.  Physically, it's a bit tougher on my old, mother of 3 body, and mentally it is tougher. The thing is, as long as my body holds out....tougher is better at this point. And I know it's just another 2 weeks, and then I have a low mileage week/break.

Moving on again....we head to Southern Ca this weekend for Brian to run the Surf City Marathon on Superbowl Sunday!! I'm so excited for him, he's trained well and is in good shape going into it. He's been picking up speed as he gets closer, so it could be a pr marathon for him.  Weather is looking cool at this point, we are hoping the rain holds off that morning, even though we really do need it.  we are staying across from the entrance to Disneyland, which is always kind of bitter sweet when you can't actually go.  Good thing we have great kids who know we are broke!  They also know that when we can take them, we do, and they've been more than most kids.  They did ask if they can walk over and watch the fireworks at night and walk through downtown Disney, so we'll for sure do that.

Ok, enough rambling for one day! Happy Monday!

Friday, January 24, 2014

Have a Great Weekend!

 I thought I'd end the week sharing some of the beauty from this morning's 5 miler.

(Those should not be blooming! This is out by the old Donner Cabin Site on Mt. Diablo.)

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Pictures and a Video

 A few beach pictures from Monday. It was 70 at the beach.
Also, at the bottom of the post is a video from this mornings run. I wanted you to hear how dry the grass/fields/Mountain is.  There was, yet again, a dry, hot wind blowing today.

 We hit our favorite Bakery, where Myles devoured some carrot cake.
 He handed me this and said I could have the, not even a whole bite.
 A few from Tuesdays run.
 I headed out a new trail, well, and old trail that was new to me. I got a little freaked out because it became clear after a few miles of a trail covered in tumble weeds and huge pine cones...nobody had been out there in a while. Lots of animal prints and poo though.

 Ok, I know this is odd, but the tan and browns of this hill reminded me of the boots I'll be ordering. Tells you what I was thinking about as I was running.

These are from today's run. Let me just tummy went from being totally fine one second to me being panicked trying to find cover to cop a squat...on a very exposed trail.  I should apologize to the turkeys for what i did on the trail today.  It was not pretty.

 Remember me talking about the trail dust a few posts back? Just keeps getting deeper and deeper.
 This is outbound way out Stage, heading up towards the ranch on the mountain and Buckeye loop.
 Feeling ok still...
 See those tan hills way way back there, the last ones you can see? I started behind those.
 Heading that way on that trail, over there is where my tummy turned.
 That trail...goodness. It's not supposed to be white powder. It's supposed to be ankle deep water and mud where the creek takes over the trail.
 And that is Froggy Pond. Was. It's bone dry. There's supposed to be a huge lake/puddle that flows from the pond and covers the trail.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Which Ones??- The Great Boot Dilemma

A new pair of boots are in my near future.Since finding that out, I have been able to narrow it down to two pairs, and...while I never do this...I am asking for your thoughts! Which ones do you like best?? I really can't decide. I like both, for different reasons.  While these will be worn in dirt, and while riding an actual horse...beyond that, they will be worn with dresses, skirts, summer fun outfits, skinny jeans, leggings....well, probably everyday. I have a tan pair from Target that I wear constantly, but they aren't "real" boots like these two pairs are.

A few things to note. I am tall, and I like a taller shaft.  Most standard cowboy boots have a 12 inch shaft, however, both these pairs are taller.  Also, note the heel height.

Ok, here they are!

This first pair is by Ariat. It has a 15 inch shaft, so would hit just below the knee. The heel height is
1 3/4 inch high.  While it has the traditional pointed toe of a cowboy boot, it is a snip toe, meaning the end is squared off, which I like.  Here's the info from the site-

  • Sassy Brown Leather Foot & Upper
  • 15" Tall Upper w/ Partial Inside Zipper
  • Decorative Stitch & Embroidery on Foot & Top Collar
  • Snip Toe
  • ATS Technology - Stability & Comfort
  • Duratread Outsole - Durability
  • 1.75" Dress Heel
  • Goodyear® Single Stitched Welt
The Sahara combines traditional western boot attributes with smooth styling to create a boot in a class all its own. Craftsmen started with a classic western foot foundation, with an X toe, Duratread outsole and scoured and distressed dress heel. The smooth foot and upper are constructed from full-grain leather. Decorative stitching and embroidery adorn the foot and top collar. The partial inside zipper provides a superb fit around the calf. Ariat’s ATS Footbed Technology delivers superior support, stability and comfort.'s the second pair.  These are by Corral, another great boot company.  They have a 13 inch shaft, so 2 inches shorter on the leg than the above pair.  The heel is 2 1/8 inches high.  Also snip toe.

Here's the info from the site-

Boot Features:
  • Cognac and antique saddle leather overlay vamp
  • 13" Cognac and antique saddle shaft with eagle overlay
  • Lightly cushioned insole
  • Leather outsole
  • 2 1/8" Heel height
  • Snip toe
  • Hand crafted and finished, no two are alike

These fancy inlay western boots by Corral Boots will turn heads from the ranch to the dance floor! The 13" goat leather shaft features an eagle inlay on the shaft and wing tip toe. Lined with comfortable leather, these boots will mold to your feet as you wear them in. The 2 1/8" is perfect for any woman and the leather sole will have you dancing all night!

Both make me giddy and I can't wait to have either one!  I think I'm getting hung up because the top pair is more versatile and I'll be able wear them with anything, any look, anytime....while I really love the bottom pair because they are a great looking pair of cowboy boots.  If I were a boot, I would look like that pair of boots! They are a boot.  Obviously, they are not as versatile as the top pair, but that would not prevent me from wearing them everywhere, even when its not appropriate to show up in cowboy boots. : )  Ok, the more I type the more I'm convinced I should get the bottom pair.

But I'd still love to hear your thoughts!!

Saturday, January 18, 2014



I pulled off 35 miles this week!
Just wanted to share that with anyone who cares.
Today's 8 after yesterdays 13 was really, really rough, but I got it done.
Still feeling really good, 5 weeks into training for Way Too Cool.
Legs are holding up well.
                                                          Looking forward to week 6!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Al's a Reader, maybe

I just watched the weather segment on the Today show....I think Roker reads my blog.
Apparently California is in a record drought, with record winds, and record breaking heat. Didn't I mention that yesterday? I was just waiting for him to say the state is experiencing "fart like" conditions. Seriously, though...another day of mid 70's, and 60 mph winds. And I need to get in 6 miles today. GR.  Brian said he heard something about being issued "rain buckets" to collect any water we do get (??) so that we have water to use.  If we get any rain that may help.  I should have mentioned yesterday that the trails are so dry on the mountain, a lot of them are inches deep of dust.  If you've been up Dusty Trail (heads up to Wall Rd from Pine Valley), you know about inches of trail dust...but right now a lot of the trails are in that same condition, which is not normal.  The ones that aren't getting ground up into dust are dried and cracked like they are  in mid summer.  I had a wave of realizing what would happen if there was any spark of any kind up on that mountain yesterday...the way the winds were ripping up there and it was such a dry heat in the wind. Quickly followed by a wave of anger because on nearly every run I see at least one cigarette butt on the ground.  Scary stuff.
Alright....well....I've painted my nails, did the dishes, wrote this lame post.....time to stop stalling and lace up and get this run done!
I love his shoes : )

I hope to have pictures up of the kids w/new cowboy boots later today! May seem random, but it's not. : )

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

If only I had Mary Poppin's Umbrella, and nature had some Beano

I just have to quickly share how horrid today's run was. Pace wise, it was my normal pace...however, at 11 a.m. it was in the 70's.  70's.  Now, that is not hot, but it is hot when I'm finally adjusted to running in anywhere from 30's - 60's.  Throw on top of that terrible, horrid, awful wind.  Strong, strong wind.  I drove up the mountain and parked at Burma, and the car was rocking so bad I was afraid to leave it there. I opened my car door and it blew backwards and crunched and I was positive it was going to blow off. I had to wrestle it closed, and that is when I made the wise choice to get down off the mountain and see if it was any better lower in the valleys. Nope. It was not better. So, now we have 70's, and hot wind. It was like constantly running into a fart. And that is what it felt like.  I seriously wanted an umbrella so I could just float up and away....on a fart. (yes, I just said fart, 3 times now in one post).    I decided that 7.7 miles of running in a fart (4x's) is = to 10 miles of running in 55 degrees and no wind and called it a day. Runners logic.

Thursday, January 9, 2014


 I got to the car around mile 11 today. I really, really wanted to hit 13.1.  It was so, so tempting to just get in the car and be done. I felt done, my legs were for sure done climbing. Garmin had me at 2500 ft of climbing at that point.Id end up with 2,688. My body was done.  But, if I quit, I would have felt  un-done. It would have been just another run where I quit because I was tired, and I could. So I didn't. Because this-

Not a fun way to get it done, but get it done I did, cuz I've got goals, darn it!

On a side note, any Garmin and Strava users out there hate that Strava cuts your elevation?  Garmin is always about the same as Running Ahead, and Strava is always right close to half of whatever Garmin says, or around 1000 less if we are talking runs that get into the 1000's, which is pretty common in this house.  Brian has a super fancy Garmin, the Fenix, which has a Barometric altimeter, which Strava requires for accurate elevation reading, so he gets killer elevation reads on his Strava. Not a big deal at the end of the day, just an annoyance.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014


First, a special shout out to my step mom, Val. Were it not for your special blue sauce (it's not lotion!), I would not be able to run today. It's really helping with my sore calves and achilles, so thank you very much!

I've been slacking the past 2 posts on pictures, so here's a post to get y'all caught up.
 Myles looks like such a baby when he sleeps, this could easily be one of his 2 year old pictures, but he's 7.
 What a lot of winter break looked like.
 We had a fun day with Brian- slept in, then went out for breakfast, then to see Walking With Dinosaurs, the movie. The kids loved it!

 Thank you, dad, for all the new running clothes! And thank you Old Navy for your 40% off sale! Remember that Live Learn  Burn shirt for a later picture.....
 This is what you do when your husband gets a confidential phone call when you are out running errands.  It's never a burden, and as a family, we just know that he's always available, 24-7 when someone needs help or to talk, so we just roll with it.  Sometimes that means waiting outside of the car, sitting in a parking lot.  Until your butt goes numb and you remember that you have camping chairs in the back of the van.  Tires make good foot rests, I've learned! : ) This pic makes it look like pants are optional when running errands.

 I took the kids for a hike. We started at Rock City, looped up to Curry Point, then down into the valley and back up around to Rock City. Above is a good look at the side of the mountain that burned, starting at the top and moving to the right.

 I had on a new pink top and new compression shorts.
 That milky water is a sulfur spring, I know this because there was a sign, not because I'm smart.

 Puzzle picture is in a random spot, but this beast took all of winter break to finish. It's now glued together and soon to be hanging in Emma's room.

 These next pictures are all from yesterday's 9 miler.   It looks a bit dark, but it was around 11 a.m.  Just cloudy.

 Wearing 2 new tops on this run, and all this pink just made me extra happy.
 That guy was ripping apart his breakfast.

 This sky reminded me of Mary Poppins.
The last two pictures are the result of taking what I thought was a trail, turned out not to be, but I just kept going and eventually came to a well used trail.  A trail that went straight up. At the end of my run when I was almost back to the car.  Ggrrr.
I said to myself about this new trail "live and learn" and then laughed, because I remembered what new tank I had on. "Live Learn Burn".  I sure was.

Happy Tuesday!

My morning started with baking 4 bags worth of frozen fries and fish sticks.  Because it's heritage day at Em's school.  And she has some English in her. Or do you say British? I don't know.  But she wanted to take fish and chips. I made her the American version.